How do I remove the "new activity" item from the desktop?

Duncan 1i5t5.duncan at
Tue May 31 02:42:36 BST 2011

John Woodhouse posted on Mon, 30 May 2011 03:51:59 -0700 as excerpted:

> Duncan are you effectively saying that everybody may be forced to use
> this cashew at some point? Sounds a bit odd as it's a sort of localised
> right click on the desktop - and yet more mouse miles as a result over
> those already judiciously added by 4. On the there hand is does reduce 2
> actions to 1. Show desktop - right click becomes on click but show
> desktop is needed for other reason in most peoples cases.

"Forced to use" is a bit strong, but it /is/ true that even now, activity 
(desktop or otherwise) "mouse actions" can be configured such that there's 
not a normal context-click available clicking directly on the bare 
activity.  And while most plasmoids have the underlying activity/panel 
menu as a submenu, that's a plasmoid programmer option, so having the 
activity/panel menu available there isn't guaranteed either, depending on 
which plasmoids (including those from kde-look or elsewhere that may not 
follow the guidelines the shipped-with-kde plasmoids follow) are displayed.

Thus, even now, it's /possible/ that the cashew may be the only way to 
access certain functionality, and it's even MORE likely to be the one /
known/ method of accessing certain things.

Consider: What would /you/ tell someone who was posting, asking how to get 
the desktop context menu back after they accidentally set the right-click 
action to something other than the standard menu?  As long as the cashew/
toolbox can be assumed to be accessible, no problem, tell them to click on 
that and select desktop (or whatever action) settings, then mouse 
options.  But if the cashew is no longer assumed to be there... and you 
don't know what plasmoids they're using or they happen to have plasmoids 
without the desktop/activity settings submenu...

Rock, meet hard place!

That's why the cashew is designed to always be there, because it's the 
only "guaranteed" access method for certain functionality.  But the catch 
is that since it's designed to always be there, other critical 
functionality and options may well be added to the same place.  The same 
functionality will /likely/ be exposed elsewhere as well, but knowing the 
cashew is always available allows the designers more flexibility as to 
where else the functionality is exposed and indeed, whether disabling or 
replacing it (as the mouse actions options now do with the activity 
context menu) is even possible, since access to the same functionality can 
always be assumed to be available thru the cashew/toolbox.

Hide-the-cashew kills that guarantee, since the cashew is designed to 
always be available and hiding it is therefore implicitly "undefined 
behavior".  Like that recent glibc optimization that recently took 
advantage of explicitly undefined behavior to optimize the defined case on 
certain hardware, but in the process broke apps relying on the explicitly 
undefined behavior since it had to that point always remained the same on 
at least x86, it's quite possible that things will go on functioning 
normally for years with hide-the-cashew... until with some update 
something vital makes use of the assumed availability of the cashew, and 
everything suddenly breaks for no /visible/ reason, for that unlucky 
person who installed hide-the-cashew years earlier and forgot about it!  
That might never happen.  That might happen.  The point is that using hide-
the-cashew breaks a design assumption, so if it ends up breaking 
something, as the saying goes "the user gets to keep the pieces."

So like much of life it's a calculated risk.  The risk averse will avoid 
it, as will those who don't care about the details and simply want it to 
work.  But there are always the few so driven to distraction by the thing 
that they're willing to take almost any risk to kill it... and the option 
does exist for those few.

> There has been some strange moves all over in recent years removing
> things from the desktop, tucking documents and of course video's in  a
> sub directory. Easily fixed fortunately by creating links to them on the
> desktop. My windoze lap top's desktop is absolutely plastered as a
> result I just can't be bothered to navigate to them. Frankly what it
> boils down to is I can't see the point in having a largely empty screen.
> Many many others can't either.

Personally, I take a middle road, there, but more on that in a down-thread 

Duncan - List replies preferred.   No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master."  Richard Stallman

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